The pMD Blog

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where we cover interesting and relevant news, insights, events, and more related to the health care industry and pMD. Most importantly, this blog is a fun, engaging way to learn about developments in an ever-changing field that is heavily influenced by technology.

POSTS BY TAG | Health Care


Image: Healthcare IT News

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  An inexpensive blood test developed by scientists will be able to predict a pregnant woman's due date and the possibility of a preterm death. Premature birth is the leading cause of newborn death in the U.S. The test detects changes in RNA circulating in a pregnant woman's blood. If the test works, it could prevent deaths of babies born prematurely.  Read More

•  On Tuesday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recalled over 5,000 HeartWare 3 Left Ventricular Assist Devices due to causing low blood flow or clotting, leading to the possibility of serious injury or death. The medical device is manufactured by pharmaceutical company, Abbott.  Read More

•  A recent study published on Sunday finds that many women diagnosed with early-stage invasive breast cancer could safely forgo chemotherapy, making the decision on whether or not to go through with chemo easier.  Read More

•  In a recent report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), hospital-acquired conditions have decreased between 2014 and 2016, saving over 8,000 lives and $2.9 billion. A safety-focused culture is important in continuing this trend for future years.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: The Felix Project

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  Many public health programs in the U.S. have been widely successful but funding for these health campaigns is surprisingly low. Why? The public sector is beholden to political forces that dictate spending. Projects that focus on more obvious and immediate benefits are preferred over public health investments. However, even with less advantageous returns, the more recent public health investments still have been worth the value they provide.  Read More

•  In a move to reduce state burdens, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services proposed a policy that would require 17 states to accept lower Medicaid payment rates without a review of the consequences or even industry input. Hospitals oppose this proposal because of the anticipated adverse impact it would have on Medicaid Beneficiaries' access to care because many providers may choose not to treat Medicaid patients.  Read More

•  Artificial intelligence is here to stay in health care and one line of research is seeking to train computers to diagnose pancreatic cancer while the disease is still readily treatable. However, The Felix Project at Johns Hopkins still puts in a huge amount of human time, labor, and intellect into training computers to distinguish between a normal pancreas and one with a tumor.  Read More

•  On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) launched an innovation challenge that aims to offer unique approaches to detecting, treating, and preventing opioid addiction. The challenge is open to products in any stage of development, from concept to testing. Developers accepted into the challenge will work with the FDA review divisions during the development and evaluation of the proposed product.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Damian Dovarganes/Associated Press

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  On Tuesday, the House passed a "right-to-try" bill that would allow terminally ill patients to get access to experimental drugs. Advocates for the bill say it would become easier for patients to get experimental drugs that have completed the first phase of clinical trials. Those opposed to the bill say the drugs could potentially shorten patients' lives, doing more harm than good.  Read More

•  Precision medicine is already underway in health care and is saving lives. However, the health care system can get stuck in a tangle of policies and other setbacks. To avoid making a broken system even worse, it is increasingly critical for hospitals to ensure an infrastructure to support these emerging technologies and provide widespread access to patients in all areas.  Read More

•  A few years ago, researchers ran an experiment that had barbers checking their customers' blood pressure and referring customers with high levels to pharmacists, who then met with the patients in the barbershop. The pharmacists would treat the patients with medications and lifestyle changes, updating their physicians but taking the physician out of the patient interaction entirely. After six months, the results showed a drop in blood pressure and a retention of those patients throughout the study and care process.  Read More

•  According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), individual premiums will see a rise by an average of 15% in 2019 due to the repeal of the individual mandate, which penalized individuals for not having insurance. Additionally, the mandate repeal will see a number of uninsured Americans rise by 3 million next year.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Pixabay

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In 2017, the U.S. saw a drop in birthrate, one of the sharpest declines since 1987. Across all groups of reproductive age, birthrates have shown a general decline. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "the decline in rate from 2016 to 2017 was the largest single-year decline since 2010."  Read More

•  This week, the Veterans Affairs Department announced that it will sign with Cerner to implement the same EHR as the Department of Defense in an effort to modernize its system. With this being one of the largest IT contracts in the federal government, it's no wonder it took nearly a year after the initial announcement for the contract to be signed.  Read More

•  Anthem, the nation's second-largest insurer has decided to slash reimbursement rates to breast pump suppliers. This means that some breast pumps that used to be free will now come at a cost to consumers. This move will especially impact lower-income moms and could potentially see a drop in breastfeeding altogether.  Read More

•  On Thursday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first medicine designed to prevent migraines. Migraines affect millions of people and are often debilitating. While the drugs do not prevent all migraine attacks, they can make them less severe.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Courtesy of Pasca lab/Stanford University

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  The Senate HELP committee bill requires the DEA to create guidelines on how providers in health care can prescribe controlled substances in a telemedicine setting. It also outlines ways in which to expand access of care for addicted patients, while limiting who can prescribe opioids through telemedicine.  Read More

•  Desperate oncology physicians are turning to immunotherapy drugs for dying cancer patients. However, experts are split. Some offer immunotherapy drugs in the hopes that the cancer drug will help but at the risk of not knowing which patients might benefit and from which drugs. Others argue that scientists must first gather rigorous evidence before treating their patients with experimental drugs.  Read More

•  Nearly a year after canceling a planned release of Medicare Advantage encounter data, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) are finally making good on their promise. CMS collected data from private insurers who administered Medicare Advantage plans since 2012. The data release is part of CMS' new data sharing program that puts patients first.  Read More

•  Research on cerebral organoids, or minibrains, are raising ethical questions about the potential development of lab-grown consciousness or sentience and what that means for human brain cells that live and grow outside the human body. Minibrains are created by transforming skin cells from a person into neural stem cells.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Image: Getty/smartstock

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In a recent study, traumatic brain injuries have been found to increase the risk for Parkinson's disease. Even mild blows to the head with subsequent symptoms can increase this risk.  Read More

•  Two medical associations announced their collaboration surrounding a value-based payment model for treatment of opioid addiction. The payment model is aimed at lowering health care spending for people with addiction by decreasing the amount of expensive emergency department visits and improving coordination of care.  Read More

•  Apple is uniquely positioned to succeed in the population health space because they are moving data directly from the health system to the device. By giving the patient their data as opposed to storing it in another cloud, Apple is creating a positive, individual-centric experience for the patient.  Read More

•  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns of an E.coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Arizona. The CDC has reported 31 people having been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported. The CDC cautions that if the source of the romaine lettuce is confirmed, do not buy or eat it.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Image: Healthcare IT News

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In research recently published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal, a new study introduces a new potential malaria-fighting tool: the medication, Ivermectin. Ivermectin kills malaria-carrying mosquitos who feed on individuals that ingest the drug.  Read More

•  Many health systems experience obstacles in the operating room in the face of supply shortages. Using inventory analytics can help reduce costs and medical supply shortages. By automating this process, costs are reduced and providers have more free time to focus on patients and support better outcomes.  Read More

•  Experts have outlined three key reasons for ditching the fee-for-service (FFS) payment model. First, FFS trends toward a metric-oriented process over patient outcome. Second, joining partnerships in value-based care can break down payment barriers and prioritize patient input. And third, FFS can create an ethical issue when physicians over-diagnose or over-treat patients in favor of increased reimbursement rates.  Read More

•  This week, a California state judge ruled that coffee sellers would be required to brand their beverages with cancer warning labels. When coffee beans are roasted, a chemical called acrylamide is formed, which is on California's list of chemicals considered to cause cancer. Companies like Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts can file objections to the proposed decision within the next two weeks.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Image: Roy Scott/Getty Images/Ikon Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  On Thursday, the House passed the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill that would fund the government through the end of September. The Department of Health and Human Services will be getting a considerable increase in the billions. The budget also  includes a large amount of funding for the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs to boost interoperability.  Read More

•  Americans living in rural areas struggle with access to care. Expansion of programs providing emergency air medical services are limited by cost but a bill introduced last summer hopes to improve access to air ambulance services by updating Medicare's currently minuscule reimbursement rates.  Read More

•  Recently, Amazon announced its entry into the health care space. Its early efforts are dedicated to selling medical supplies such as gloves, syringes, and other health care items to various types of providers.  Read More

•  Social media is becoming a platform for patients to connect online and share reactions to drug treatments. Sometimes, clinical trials can miss side effects and collecting data about a drug from insurance claims and health records can take a long time. So, rather than being faced with lag time, companies are often sifting through the internet and social media for patient reports of side effects as a tempting method of collecting data. But experts warn of drawbacks to this approach.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Image: Gerald Herbert/AP

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  Use of opioid drugs has risen among the elderly population, despite their vulnerability to the drugs' side effects. Pain relievers like Vicodin and Oxycontin are frequently prescribed for older people, often for falls and fractures, and when patients take both, they're at risk for overdosing.  Read More

•  Leading vendors in the electronic health record space are developing technology that incorporate artificial intelligence, or AI. For AI and machine learning to advance in health care, clean data is needed to fuel interoperability and modern data exchange.  Read More

•  In a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, it has been found that the U.S. spends nearly double the amount on medical care than 10 of the highest-income countries, yet performed less well on patient population health outcomes. The main drivers of the differences in spending are prices of labor and goods and administrative costs.  Read More

•  On Thursday, the Food and Drug Administration announced its plans to reduce the amount of nicotine in cigarettes in the hopes of weaning millions of smokers off the deadly habit. The goal is also to prevent millions more from becoming regular smokers. Preliminary plans to cut nicotine in cigarettes tentatively begin in July.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Image: Trina Dalziel/Getty Images/Ikon Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In a recent report, it has been found that women taking probiotics and fish oil supplements during pregnancy and breast-feeding may reduce food allergy risks and eczema in early childhood.  Read More

•  The U.S. still has the highest health care costs in the world and some experts suggest that carefully scrutinizing unnecessary elective treatments could contribute to a long-term solution. As people live longer, the population takes on more cost.  Read More

•  On Tuesday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it has plans to do a complete overhaul of the Meaningful Use program for hospitals. CMS Administrator, Seema Verma, specified to reporters that the agency is moving away from giving credit to providers for simply having an EHR to making sure their EHR is focused on interoperability and providing patients with their data.  Read More

•  A slowly growing number of health systems are encouraging selected emergency department patients who are acutely ill yet stable to opt for hospital-level care at home. For this subset of patients, a trip to the hospital can put them at risk for infection, sleeplessness, and delirium, among other problems. The biggest obstacle is getting health insurers to pay for it.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.